Drug Stock More Than Doubled Today; FAANG Rumors Sink GameStop

Plus, analysts downgrade Amgen ahead of earnings

by Patrick Martin

Published on Jan 28, 2019 at 2:47 PM

The Dow is getting wrecked today as Caterpillar (CAT) and chip stocks sell off. Biotech name Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN) and video game retailer GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME) are under pressure, but drugmaker Avalon GloboCare Corp (NASDAQ:AVCO) has doubled in value today. Below, we'll take a look at what's moving the shares of AMGN, GME, and AVCO.

AMGN Gets Downgraded Ahead of Earnings

This morning, Evercore ISI downgraded Amgen to "in line," citing the cheaper generic drug competition coming from rivals such as Novartis AG. The downgrade comes one day before the company's fourth-quarter earnings report. At last check, AMGN was down 4.1% to trade at $190.72, taking the stock below its year-to-date and year-over-year breakeven levels. 

The options pits are as evenly split as they could be. Data from the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) shows speculative players have bought to open 2,919 puts in the last 10 sessions, compared to just 2,917 calls. However, the resultant put/call volume ratio of ranks in the 72nd percentile of its annual range, meaning puts have been bought to open over calls at a quicker-than-usual clip ahead of earnings.

GME Rally Paused by Apple Competition

GameStop stock is down 2.4% to trade at $15.52, after reports surfaced that Apple (AAPL) is planning a Netflix-like subscription service for video games. Despite the drop today, GME still boasts a 23.4% year-to-date gain thanks to buyout buzz, and the damage today appears to be contained by its 20-day moving average. 

The mood in the options pits has leaned bearishly. ISE/CBOE/PHLX data shows GME with a 10-day put/call volume ratio of 2.38, which ranks in the 79th percentile of its annual range. Echoing that, GME has seen more than 7,000 puts change hands today -- two time the average afternoon volume, and nearly twice the number of calls exchanged.

Cancer Development Sends AVCO Skyrocketing 

Sitting at the top of the Nasdaq today is Avalon GloboCare stock, up an incredible 104% to trade at $8.63, after the company's subsidiary Genexosome Technologies announced the development of a saliva-based bio-marker for its oral cancer therapy. AVCO has now tripled already in 2019, and tapped a record high of $13.50 on Jan. 22. 


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